When i’m scrolling through Pinterest, anything with “One Pot” in the title gets my attention. Less dishes? Yes please! This recipe is the result of trying a few different chili mac recipes I found, then I made some changes and morphed them together. It’s my franken-mac. It’s not too spicy, so it won’t upset little tummies. It makes enough to feed a crowd, or plenty leftovers (it holds up really well in the fridge). Sometimes when I know I have a busy day in the week, i’ll make this for dinner the day before so we can just do leftovers the next day.
Note: I don’t know about you, but sometimes I start cooking, not realizing that I need to chop, dice, or shred something. So, I added a “prep” section in the recipe. If you think this is helpful let me know and i’ll continue to add it in my future recipes. I’ll even add it to recipes I have already posted if anyone requests. I’m here to help!
Now, ingredients, assemble!!!
The other good thing about this meal is that it’s very budget friendly. Depending on what you have on hand in the pantry, you’ll probably only need to buy a few ingredients!
After you cook your onions and garlic, and brown the ground beef, you’re going to add flour and chili powder and cook for just a minute. It should look something like this. This helps thicken the sauce as it cooks, creates a crust on the meat for more texture, and the browned flour adds a yummy layer of flavor. You can do this when you make chili and beef stews too!
After you’ve added the tomatoes, beef broth, and pasta, press the pasta down a bit with the spoon to cover it with the liquid to ensure it cooks the pasta. Like so:
You may have noticed that I do not have elbow pasta, I have corkscrews. I blame pregnancy brain. You can use other pasta, such as rotini, bowtie, or whatever you have on hand. You’ll just need to adjust your cook time. I like my pasta al dente, so I just started checking after 10 minutes until it was cooked to my liking. When the pasta is almost cooked through, add your beans.
After the pasta is cooked through, most of the liquid will be gone, then it’s time to add your cheese.
Stir it all up to melt the cheese and serve. Just look at that ooey gooey cheesy goodness! Enjoy!
One Pot Cheesy Chili Mac
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 cup chili powder
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes
- 2 cups beef broth
- 2 cups uncooked elbow pasta
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Dice onion. Mince garlic (if using whole cloves). Shred cheese. Drain and rinse beans. Prepare beef broth if using bullion cubes.
- Heat olive oil in a large saute pan or stock pot over medium high heat. Add onion and cook for about 2 minutes or until transparent. Add garlic and cook for about 1 minute.
- Add ground beef and cook until browned. If using a high fat ground beef, drain after browning.
- Add the flour and chili powder and stir to coat the meat. Stir and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Add diced tomatoes and beef broth, stir well.
- Add the dry elbow pasta to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook for 15-25 minutes, or until pasta is tender, stirring every 5-10 minutes. Be sure to scrape the bottom so nothing gets stuck and burned to the bottom of the pan.
- Add beans to the pot in the last 5 minutes of cooking to heat through.
- When pasta is cooked, remove the pot to a cool burner and add cheese, stir well until all of the cheese has melted.